Body Pulled From River Is Alleged Bank Robber

Credit: Pueblo Fire Department
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A body recovered from the Arkansas River near Runyon Lake in Pueblo Monday is that of alleged bank robber Jeffrey Cathcart.

He jumped into the river and disappeared during a chase with police July 17.

Police say the exact amount of cash stolen from the bank was found on Cathcart's body. Crews had found his bag a few days before along the river, but it was empty.

Cathcart allegedly robbed the Security Service Federal Credit Union on the 300 block of E. Abriendo in Pueblo on the afternoon of July 17, then ran to the trail along the Arkansas River to get away. Witnesses pointed police in that direction and the officers soon caught up to him. Just as they started to close in on him near the Santa Fe Bridge, the suspect reportedly dived into the river.

A witness who saw the whole thing told 11 News that at first the suspect seemed confident that he had escaped police, going so far as to climbing onto a cement slab in the middle of the river and taunt officers.

But when Cathcart jumped back into the water, he never resurfaced. A police spokesman says the man may have gotten caught in the undertow.

Police and search crews combed the river over the next few days, but found no trace of the suspect. On Sunday night, police say someone reported seeing a body in the river Sunday. Monday morning, the fire department confirmed they were working to recover a body near the lake.

"It's a tragic incident and it's a good thing the body was found," Sgt. Eric Gonzales with the Pueblo Police Department said. "There's several stories across the state where bodies aren't found. It's kind of closure for the family, the fact that the body was found."

Police say that in addition to being suspected of the June 17 bank robbery, Cathcart, 40, was also the suspect in a theft at a grocery store in late June.

Cathcart recently was released from prison after serving time for a theft in Pueblo last year.